Friday, January 8, 2021

Why We No Longer Think The FT's Izabella Kaminska Is A Spymaster

She's a subversive. 
Had she been born a couple generations earlier she might have been a saboteur.

More on these distinctions at a later date but for now, some background.

Starting with the realization Ms Kaminska's byline has not appeared at either the Alphaville site or the main paper since December, the usual "Where in the World Is Izabella Kaminska" klaxon was sounded.

We've been here before. And I've come around to the idea that the fact both Izabella  and the Director of GCHQ were running "puzzles" at the same time was just coincidence.

From a 2019 post:

....Over the years she has been with the Financial Times' flagship online property, FT Alphaville, Ms Kaminska has disappeared without explanation for varying amounts of time, a very spy-y thing to do.

I will be the first to admit I have from time to time misunderstood what was going on.
In 2014, following a Camp Alphaville she organized, I may have gone wrong with "Where In the World Is Izabella Kaminska?"

It seems that following Camp Alphaville:...:

She has apparently retreated from the world, with only a few flyby's of her personal blog, Dizzynomics, to show she still cares about writing rather than, say, pursuing a full-time financial-event-planning career-
"I want the dark inventory in the shadow of the crypto mining rigs"
"Yes, nice effect".
"Now, could the Central Bankers do a last run-through of their opening,..."
"'We're in the money...'"
As I say, possibly a misinterpretation.

However...two years later she was sending coded messages, hidden in plain sight, at the exact same time as the putative Director of uber-spy outfit GCHQ.
January 2016
Okay Spy Guys and Spy Gals: Did Anyone Crack the GCHQ Puzzle?
Back in December Britain's signals intelligence outfit posted:
A Christmas card with a cryptographic twist for charity
News article - 7 Dec 2015
This year, along with his traditional Christmas cards, Director GCHQ Robert Hannigan is including a brain-teasing puzzle that seems certain to exercise the grey matter of participants over the holiday season....
And Izabella:
January 2016
Where in the World Is Izabella Kaminska and Can We Find Her Before the NSA and GCHQ Do So?
There is a post on her personal blog, written as free verse quatrains and I think it's obvious she's trying to send us a message that the intelligence services can't easily decrypt:

TL;DR, let's just say the solution leads us behind the former iron curtain, as described in February 2017's "Where In the World Is Izabella Kaminska?"
Dizzynomics put up a post referencing Rawaici.
Schoolboy French reminds us that ici is "here", that's easy enough.

A bit of googling turns up the coat of arms of Rawa, Poland:

File:POL COA Rawicz.svg
A woman on a bear while another bear, apparently under the influence, admires a flower.

So..."Party Here"?

I believe Rawaici may be an invitation to a cocktail party to discuss riding out the bear market.

Or, longshot, if you're into heraldry and heraldic vexillology, it's simply:...

Dame Judi Densch's demise in 2012's Skyfall very conveniently created an opening for the insertion of a new 'M'.
I rest my case. 

Coming soon: The subversive lifestyle, living under totalitarian tyranny while keeping your wits about you